London’s Air Ambulance Charity, the service that delivers rapid response and cutting-edge medical care to help save lives in the city has today announced the total raised at their Gala dinner was a record £944,000.
This is the equivalent of over 400 potentially life-saving missions, helping the capital’s only helicopter emergency service to continue to provide immediate hospital level care to the 10 million people who live, work and travel in the capital. The need for support is particularly great as the Charity must raise an additional £15million by 2024 to replace their current helicopter fleet.
The Gala was attended by the Charity’s Patron, His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge. The Duke met with some of the heroic medical and operational crew to thank them for their service, as well as meeting an inspirational patient of the service, Bruno, whose life was saved by the London’s Air Ambulance team when he was just 11. Bruno and his father, Daniel Machado, later gave a powerful speech to the assembled guests. For more information on Bruno’s story see here.
The Duke also delivered a moving speech in support of the charity and its appeal for two new helicopters. As an air ambulance pilot himself, the Duke has witnessed the positive impact of rapid response trauma work first-hand.
His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge said:
What struck me when working as an air ambulance pilot was how serious injury does not discriminate. It can happen to anyone. At any time. In any place. Just one moment can turn a life upside down. Earlier this evening, I had the great privilege to meet a young man named Bruno, and his father Daniel. At age 11, Bruno was knocked off his scooter by a vehicle and suffered a serious brain injury. London’s Air Ambulance flew to him immediately, arriving within minutes to bring the hospital to his side and saving his life. As a charity, London’s Air Ambulance is reliant on support from the public. Tonight, your generosity will go towards this ambitious plan and will enable the charity to do even more in the future to deliver first class care when Londoners need it most.
The event, held at The Londoner Hotel in Leicester Square, was also attended by a number of VIP guests, including Tamara Beckwith and her husband Giorgio Veroni. Sotheby’s Chairman Sir Harry Dalmeny was the auctioneer for the evening and the event was hosted by presenter and comedian Sindhu Vee. Entertainment was provided by Alessandro Ristori and the Portofinos, and Saloon Star.
Jonathan Jenkins, CEO of London’s Air Ambulance Charity said;
“When a patient is critically injured, there is often no time to get that person to hospital. In those instances, our teams can provide a lifeline, arriving within 11 minutes to perform advanced interventions at scene to try and save a life. But they can only be there thanks to our generous supporters. It costs around £10million to deliver our service, the vast majority of which we have to find from donations. In addition we know that by 2024 we also need to raise an additional £15million so we can replace our current helicopter fleet.
That is why we are so grateful to the Duke for his sincere support for our cause, as shown by his attendance and heartfelt speech at the Gala. He continues to help us raise awareness of the unique work we do and inspire vital support so that we can continue to save lives.
“It is humbling to see so many people donating so generously to our charity, making it our most successful Gala to date. All the funds raised will help us continue to be there for London when a life is on the line.
“We are also very grateful to our committee, our sponsors AlbaCore Capital and CoinShares International Limited; to each of the table hosts, and to our auctioneer Lord Harry Dalmeny for helping us raise so much on the night.”
London’s Air Ambulance delivers an advanced trauma team, made up of a doctor and paramedic, to bring the hospital to the scene via helicopter or rapid response car when time is of the essence. The expert teams can reach anywhere in London in under 11 minutes.
Primarily funded by charitable donations, the service is also run in partnership with Barts Health NHS Trust and the London Ambulance Service NHS Trust. Barts Health NHS Trust provides the doctors, some financial support and the helipad facilities at The Royal London Hospital. The London Ambulance Service NHS Trust provides the paramedics and the emergency infrastructure to dispatch the service 24 hours a day.